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Instant Replay: Amazing finishes and champion coronations

Prep Rally

Quick thought: With all the state titles and double-ranked matchups flying around, does it get any better than the past couple weekends in high school football? Easy answer: No. With that -- and the latest edition of the RivalsHigh 100 due to be released Tuesday afternoon -- here's how the weekend's biggest matchups featured on last week's Weekend Watch(es), version 1 and version 2, turned out.

No. 11 Armwood (Fla.) 22, No. 12 Dwyer (Fla.) 20: Finishes don't get much tighter or more exciting than the one between Armwood and Dwyer, which saw Dwyer take a late lead but leave just enough time -- even though that amount was less than a minute -- to allow Armwood to sneak out with a win and berth in a state title game.

No. 74 Oaks Christian (Calif.) 29, No. 44 Westlake (Calif.) 28: Speaking of great finishes, this was the only one even more dramatic than the one served up down in Florida. With a CIF Southern Section title on the line, these two rivals were so evenly matched that Oaks Christian held on to a win by the width of a crossbar, with a field goal to win the game for Westlake bouncing off the upright as time expired. That followed a game-winning drive for Oaks Christian, which was capped with the game-winning two-point conversion, a move Oaks Christian coach Bill Redell said he used because it was the only way his team was going to win.

No. 3 St. Thomas Aquinas (Fla.) 31, No. 28 Manatee (Fla.) 7: This wasn't a tight faceoff, this was a rout through-and-through, with No. 3 Aquinas making sure it didn't face the same fate that shockingly ended its season short of the state final a year ago. This time, Aquinas is on to the final hurdle, with an outside shot at a national title still alive.

Shiloh Christian (Ark.) 61, Pulaski Academy (Ark.) 40: The Arkansas Class 4A title was an all-private school affair, with Shiloh cruising to its fourth state title in the past five years, finally putting the drubbing they absorbed at the hands of No. 5 Euless Trinity (Texas) earlier in the year behind them in the process.

No. 18 Servite (Calif.) 41, No. 6 Mission Viejo (Calif.) 27: For the second straight year, Servite dominated the Pac-5 championship game, cruising past Mission Viejo with a performance that was even more dominant than the final score indicated. It was rewarded for that dominance, too, with a berth in the state's Open Bowl.

No. 23 Phoebus (Va.) 36, No. 45 Stone Bridge (Va.) 17: If there were any questions about Phoebus' resilience, they were answered at the start of the second half in the state title game, when the traditional powerhouse responded from allowing 17 points in one frantic three-minute stretch of the second quarter to rack up 22 points and shut out highly regarded Stone Bridge simultaneously.

No. 67 Plant (Fla.) 48, No. 37 Lakeland (Fla.) 6: Plant was the preseason favorite to win the RivalsHigh 100 title -- it was ranked No. 1 in the preseason poll, and most expected it to demolish every team on its schedule -- yet it stumbled out of the gates. Now, Plant is showing just why it received such high acclaim, most stunningly with a 31-point rout of Lakeland that earned it a second-straight berth in the state title game and a chance to defend its Class 5A crown.

No. 5 Euless Trinity (Texas) 28, No. 19 Round Rock Stony Point (Texas) 24: Ladies and gentlemen, if you like close, nail-biting victories, we have your team: Trinity, the reigning Texas champions and aforementioned destroyers of Shiloh Christian, which snuck past Stony Point, one of the nation's offensive dynamos, in part by controlling the ball for the entire final 7:13 by pounding out the yards with its nearly unstoppable running game. The reward was a state title game against Pearland, another explosive offensive team which seems to be peaking at just the right time. We'll see if they can peak for Trinity, or if Trinity has one more big running week in it. Either way, they'll get in at least one more pregame Haka, like the one you see below.

No. 27 Acadiana (La.) 21, No. 9 West Monroe (La.) 14: If you are among the loyal West Monroe backers who actually saw the team's rapid rise from 6-4 playoff bottom feeders to state champions and the annointed team to knock off top-10 ranked West Monroe, well, pat yourself on the back. Unsurprisingly, few saw the rise coming, but Acadiana capped off the magnificent playoff turnaround by shocking West Monroe, which couldn't find its way into the end zone after returning the opening kickoff of the second half back for a touchdown that gave it a 14-13 lead that didn't hold up.

No. 83 Evangel Christian (La.) 28, John Curtis (La.) 14: It may be an unlikely development, but Evangel Christian is all but officially a small-town dynasty in Louisiana. The Class 2A champions defended their crown against the program traditionally considered the best small town team in the Pelican state, rolling to a two-touchdown win at the Superdome.

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